7/28/2008

July Status Report

Sticky summer heat lulls down my back like honey. It’s sugary for certain though sometimes, or rather often, sweaty too.

Art:
I’ve come to the burning realization that all my friends are artists. Every single one. They are the makers of melodies, the pens behind poems with the eyes like camera lenses. Life is a lot prettier when every conversation is a sonnet, and that’s how it feels. Even the weather feels like a song. The baroque heat and the whimsy of breeze. Mozart ain’t got shit on this.

Summer of Celibacy 2008, Abstinence Challenge:
My body has not known the feel of hands- neither mine nor others- for a solid 30 days. It began as an internal protest to love lost, then a personal challenge, but now it’s completely different. Often I feel my body tinge in wanting, but something tells me to be patient. The distance between will sweeten. And it’s not an impatient waiting and it’s not an expectant waiting. My head and my heart are open for what will come, whenever that may be.

All in all, it’s been a month marked by healing sans scar, of opening outward but reaching inward.

I think they call it making peace.

7/24/2008

Chesil

I've just finished two Ian McEwan novels, and I'm onto a third (Saturday). And yet I'm so deterred because they will all end the same. There will be a love story between two people so tragically flawed, so helplessly human. Then add the catalyst of some some mistaken identity or perception of what is not there, and voila! our star-crossed lovers are subjected to an untimely death, or a life of mediocracy, or worst of all, the sting of self-righteous martyrdom.

And I'll finish the last page, and cry, and wonder why Mr. McEwan can't write something that makes me believe that there is good in the world and that having loved at all is better than love lost. Why, Mr. McEwan? Why find the sorest nerve and prod it? Is it to counter all those pharmacy paperback love novels, so idealistic in their romances? Let the hardened lawyer have her coffeeshop poet. And let them die old together in their bed, like that scene from Titanic, while the world comes flooding in.

Like Maroon 5 says, "It's not always rainbows and butterflies. It's compromise that moves us along" and I get it. There will be heartbreak and there will be blood. And there will be pages tear spattered. This I know. But I would rejoice if ever Mr. McEwan followed this up with (again in the words of Maroon 5) "My heart is full and my door's always open. You can come any time you want." Can you leave the door open rather than nailing it shut like a coffin? Will you do it for me?

With Love,
JaiB

+++++
"On Chesil Beach" by Ian McEwan:

"When he thought of her, it rather amazed him, that he had let that girl with her violin go. Now, of course, he saw that her self-effacing proposal was quite irrelevant. All she had needed was the certainty of his love, and his reassurance that there was no hurry when a lifetime lay ahead of them. Love and patience- if only he had had them both at once- would surely have seen them both through. And when what unborn children might have had their chances, what young girl with a headband might have become his loved familiar? This is how the entire course of a life can be changed- by doing nothing. On Chesil Beach he could have called out to Florence, he could have gone after her. He did not know, or would not have cared to know, that as she ran away from him, certain in her distress that she was about to lose him, she had never loved him more, or more hopelessly, and that the sound of his voice would have been a deliverance, and she would have turned back. Instead, he stood in cold and righteous silence in the summer's dusk, watching her hurry along the shore, the sound of her difficult progress lost to the breaking of small waves, until she was a blurred, receding point against the immense straight road of shingle gleaming in the pallid light."

7/22/2008

Idiot Troll


“You know what? I am actually not that much into voting. I think it’s kinda crazy that a woman is running, because I think that women deal with a lot of emotions and menopause and PMS and stuff. Like, I’m so moody all the time, I know I couldn’t be able to run a country, ‘cause I’d be crying one day and yelling at people the next day, ya know?”—Brooke Hogan

Post Date Assessment: Jeff Goldblum

This is the first edition of post-first date assessments. If they’re all as hilarious as this, I think I might publish a book.

I pinned this guy for having some potential. He’s a professional musician (which covers the artistic outlet criteria), brews his own beer (yay, interesting hobby and free booze), and he wears cool glasses (style points). Granted I didn’t talk to him much pre-date, but he seemed nice enough and I dug his music. He asked me out to give me a beer tasting lesson and I gave in for a Sunday evening date. (but not before giving friends all possible details, just in case he roofied my drink and made me his house pet. Also I arranged for a couple escape route calls in case it was unbearable)

A friend dressed me, so you know I was looking... fly. And we got a big breakfast at the diner so I wouldn't vomit right away. (Although there was some weird licorice gravy that was questionable in nature) I got there 5 minutes early and he got there 10 minutes late, sweaty. I thought, 'well at least he ran and called to say he was running late.' I didn't take points off, but he didn't get any either. We sat at the booth and I let him order for me. I admitted that I didn’t like the first beer, a super heavy IPA, even though that was his fave. Conversation went fine. I smiled a lot, not because he was particularly funny, but I think you should be smiling when you meet new people. I dig that he teaches kids guitar, but doesn't dig actual kids. Plus he has two dogs, sorta. They're at his parents, so I guess not really.

The waiter came around and asked if we wanted another round. My date looked at me and said “yeah, same thing.” Uh, yo, dude. Didn’t I just say I didn’t like it?? So I had 3 (or maybe 4) more.

On our fifth or maybe fourth drink, he looked at his watch and said that he had to go feed the meter. So we downed whatever number drink that was, he went to the bathroom, I put in money for my drinks, and we headed out. He had asked me if I had paid and I said yes, but after we got a couple blocks away I realized he was asking me if I paid the entire bill, which I did not because why the fuck would I do that? I only paid for myself, and I thought that was a kind gesture. Essentially we only paid half the bill. Soooo, I'm never going back there again.

We got to his car (which was right in front of Woodys), and I gave him all the change from the bottom of my bag because he didn’t have any. We walked all over god's green earth (or Philadelphia's gross sidewalks) looking for this one bar, and eventually ended up at Nodding Head, where we had another drink- another IPA that I didn’t like. He paid, the entire bill this time.

At this part of the date I realized that he had really bad posture and girly hands. And god, that Jeff Goldblum mouth! And his hair was blah. What you do with your hair says a lot about you. Maybe I was being overly harsh. Or maybe all that walking sobered me some. I kinda liked his glasses and his shoes, but if I ever saw him naked, all he would have is bad posture AND THAT MOUTH.

He offered to drive me home and I accepted because nobody likes the subway and drunk driving sounded preferable. (don't worry. i wore a seatbelt) He pulled up in front of the building I live in, put a hand on my back as I reached for my bag and said he thinks he's going to call me tomorrow to ask if I would like to do this again sometime. I mean I guess he was still debating it at that point. And then he leaned in... and I thought "omg you're touching me. Jeff Goldblum is touching me. Jeff Goldblum is watching you poop. Bathroom stall. Poop. Kiss." So I quickly offered my cheek and drunkily made it to my room, totally forgetting and neglecting the fact that I had feet (and a sprained ankle).

I fell asleep fine (read: I was intoxicated enough to pass out in my clothes), but awoke to the smell of fried chicken. The cleaning lady was frying chicken at 6am this morning. what. the. fuck. Immediately, I ran to the bathroom and puked up milkshake and biscuits (or what I think was biscuits and milkshakes). And then I proceeded to lay in bed and think about Jurassic Park, as a music video, while scrolling through the progressively incoherent, hilarious texts I sent last night.

7/21/2008

Alchemy



Alchemy: “spagyric art,” from Greek meaning to pull apart and put back together again. An art of sciences: chemistry and astrology, mysticism and spiritualism. We are deduced to parts- to hands and palms, faces- heavy eyes and mouths, sloped noses, ears, napes, necks, breasts and shoulders, tummies and hips, shins, knees, toes, heels… We are deduced to parts- to protons and neutrons, electrons, fermions, bosons, undulating photons shot at foil, not repelled but penetrated, gravitons, axioms, polaritons with their dipole-carrying excitation.


Sometimes I can feel the glowing charged particles spring from my skin like photons, bumping and bouncing off the bodies around me. The positives and negatives lounging their atomic masses towards each other until their forms overlap, electric shared, and at once something entirely new is made.


Call this making gold -or- making love. And in taking that gold, which so many men have died to touch- panhandler kings- we shape our rings around our fingers, part to part, while we're swirling, twirling those bodies apart, then together again.


How learned men can be so ignorant to search for forever in a cauldron, when by bed posts we stand so brave and so proud. Every answer to every question and every cure to every pain are held in hands not gilded, but guided. Our parts welded. We thought we were making history, making precious of base metal, aligning stars, but really we were just exploring those napes, those neurons.


We map the metaphysical, we pant the paradoxical.


We built an empire.



We called it El Dorado.

7/17/2008

Luno



I looked up to find the moon-
Once again
an orange sickle poised
to

d
r
o
p

cutting oceans into
seas,
into
undulations,
waves that
crashed onto shells that house Fibonacci.
splashed unto faces that beam Fibonacci.
carried flagrant flowers that bloom Fibonacci.

[1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21]

The fattened sickle
Now pregnant, full
coaxes the fetus from the womb

Inhale [pull]
Exhale [push]

The lunar father smiles
Lets flesh-and-blood fathers cut the umbilical cord
That tied us to our earth-and-mother


We passed cigars
And cheered
“Congrats!
A boy!”

Pulmo

The white filter delivered
To chap sticked lips
And I
d r a g g e d,
left a greasy kiss behind.

Carbon monoxide tickles bronchioles
Then singes

7/11/2008

Plastic Flamingos

Union Products, Inc., the manufacturer of pink plastic flamingos, after 50 years, is filing bankrupcy.

These gracefully tacky white-trash lawn ornaments are staples of American culture! Quintessential Florida trailer home flair! Their spindle legs and their creepy misshapen spray painted eyes (or sometimes unpainted eyes, which is way creepier) are looking us all square in the face and asking what kind of Americans are we if we let them go extinct. First polar bears and now plastic flamingos.

How can we let this happen?

According to the Boston Channel, "Union Products president and majority owner Dennis L. Plante said in 2006 that the plastics industry has hit hard times because of the cost of electricity and resin, a petroleum-based product that is a key manufacturing ingredient."

I'm writing my congress person to voice my support of the war in the Middle East. Bring home oil! Save the flamingos! America fuck yeah!



please save me.

Summer of Celibacy 2008!!

The abstinence challenge is well-underway and I am pleased to announce that my lack of endeavors has raised thousands for children living with spinal bifida! [not really]. I’m not sure why I started, but there was a definite beginning. Of this much, I am certain.


So what do you do with your hands all day?

Lately they’ve been up to the wrist in flour, as I’m trying out new recipes for the bakery that I’m going to open up just as soon as I have a master’s degree in something. I’m going to call it “Roux” and if you get the reference, yeaahhh. Also, I’ve finished four books since the beginning of summer and I’ve enlivened lots of coloring book pages. I’m into friendship bracelets.

As I much as I support (just about) anyone’s sexual habits, I have learned that the parents that have taught their children that ‘true love waits,’ hate their children.

Why are you doing this?

I like to challenge myself each and every day. I set out to master the paper crane yesterday. Do you know how aggravating it is to follow those god damn origami directions? Infuriating. Though I have made the crane, and if I make 999 more I can cure someone of leukemia.

Also my battement tendu could use some work.

What have you learned on this journey?
N/A

When will it end?!
A) when my willpower gives out
B) when someone worthwhile gives out
C) when the world comes to an end
D) all of the above


Now donate to spinal bifida.

7/06/2008

Happy Birthday America

Happy Fourth of July! A day of fake-meat grilling, beer, volleyball and explosives!
Oh, and these:

Blast. Collision. Bang. EXPLODING CANDY TIP.

yep.



Oh, and these:

7/03/2008

Della Primavera Trasportata al Morale

APRIL
William Carlos Williams

the beginning- or
what you will:
the dress
in which the veritable winter
walks in Spring-

Loose it!
Let it fall (where it will)
-again

A live thing
the buds are upon it
the green shoot come between
the red flowerets
curled back

Under whose green veil
strain trunk and limbs of
the supporting trees-

Yellow! the arched stick
Pinning the gragile foil
-in abundance
Or
the bush before the rose
pointed with green

bent into form
upon the iron frame

wild onion
swifter than the grass

the grass thick
at the post’s base

iris blades unsheathed-

BUY THIS PROPERTY

-the complexion of the impossible
(you’ll say)
never realized-
At a desk in a hotel in front of a

Machine a year
later – for a day or two-

(Quite so-)
Whereas the reality trembles

frankly
in that though it was like this

in part
it was deformed

even when at its utmost to
touch- as it did

and fill and give and take
-a kind

of rough flowers
and April

STOP : GO

-she
opened the door! nearly
six feet tall, and I…
wanted to found a new country-

For the rest, virgin negress
at the glass
in blue-glass Venetian beads-

a green truck
dragging a concrete mixer
passes
in the street-
the chatter and true sound
of verse-

-the wind is howling
the river, shining mud-

Moral
it loses me

Moral
it supports me

Moral
it has never ceased
to flow

Moral
the faded evergreen

Moral
I can laugh

Moral
the redhead sat
in bed with her legs
crossed and talked
rough stuff

Moral
the door is open

Moral
the tree moving diversely
in all parts-

-the moral is love, bred of
The mind and eyes and hands-

But in the cross-current
between what the hands reach
and the mind desires

and the eyes see
and see starvation, it is

useless to have it thought
that we are full-

But April is a thing
comes just the same-

and in it we see now
what then we did not know-
STOP : STOP

I believe
in the sound patriotic and
progressive Mulish policies
and if elected-

I believe
in a continuance of the pro-
tective tariff because-

I believe
that the country can’t do
too much-

I believe
in honest law enforcement-
and I also believe-

I believe
in giving the farmer and
land owner adequate protection

I believe

I believe

I believe
in equality for the negro-

THIS IS MY PLATFORM

I believe in your love
the first dandelion
flower at the edge of-

taraaaaaaa! taraaaaaaa!

-the fisherman’s bugle announces
the warm wind-

reminiscent of the sea
the plumtree flaunts
its blossom-encrusted
branches-

I believe
Moving to three doors
above- May 1st.

I believe
ICE- and warehouse site

No parking between tree and corner

You would “kill me with kindness”
I love you too, but I love you
too-

Thus, in that light and in that
Light only can I say-

Winter : Spring

abandoned to you. The world lost-
in you

Is not that devastating enough
for one century?

I believe
Spumoni $1.00
French Vanilla .70
Chocolate .70
Strawberry .70
Maple Walnut .70
Coffee .70
Tutti Frutti .70
Pistachio .70
Cherry Special .70
Orange Ice .70
Biscuit Tortoni .70
25c per portion

trees-seemingly dead:
the long years-

tactus eruditus

Maple, I see you have
a squirrel in your crotch-

And you have a woodpecker
In your hole, Sycamore

-a fat blonde, in purple (no trucking
on this street)

POISON!

I believe

WOMAN’S WARD


PRIVATE


The soul, my God, shall rise up
-a tree
But who are You?
in this mortal wind
that I at least can understand
having sinned willingly

The forms
of the emotions are crystalline
geometric-faceted. So we recognize
only in the white heat of
understanding, when a flame
runs through the gap made
by learning, the shapes of things-
the ovoid sun, the pointed trees

lashing branches

The wind is fierce, lashing

the long-limbed trees whose
branches
wildly toss-



Limericks are the New Haikus

“Poet”
There once was a girl named Jai
Who dropped bombs all night and day
Limerick rhyme feats
Haiku kept beats
I’m gangster, son, see NWA

“Math”
Greater than X but lesser than Y
3.141592 equals pi
Oh academia!
Threadbare bohemia!
Love everything you are divisible by.

“Moon”
You have a face like a lunar crater
First lesser, then growing greater
Come, succumb,
Celestial alum
Twirl along your magnetic equator

“Geography”
Come over for a lesson in bodily geography
With hands on my warm flesh topography
You don’t need a map
This is a booby trap
Navigate me like the Black Sea.

“July 4th”
The sky is heavy, drip and drizzle
Arsenic flair, aluminum glare, tin fizzle
Fishes zoom
Illuminated bloom
Fleeting red, blue, amber thistle.

“Summer”
Stained blue-tongue kool-aid giggle
Strawberry blueberry jello shot jiggle
Kiss cheeks
Math geeks
Poetry notebook pen ink squiggle

“Black Eyes”
Sweetheart, baby, I’ll always be by your side
Or I’ll quietly pack and leave if you decide
I won’t ask whys
I’ll wear your black eyes
Darling, darling, I’ll be your porcelain bride.

“Illumination”
Uniforms that sin, death in Berlin
Hand grenade grin, pulled pin
Mass graves
Atomic waves
Everyone everywhere, a small violin

“Thee Our Father”
Carnation bouquet for a passion play
We fast the day and together we pray
A book of psalms
Hands palm to palm
Father, forgive us for our moral decay

“Trois”
Our sisters’ sneeze, our neighbors’ knees
Our children’s uneaten peas, our enemies
The scribe’s pen
The brooding hen
Our given-word guarantees, written-word decrees.

Our lovers’ eyes, grocery store quarter prize
Our lovers’ thighs, grand orchestra finale reprise
Told attic stories
Fallen hero glories
Purple sky sunrise, lunar night goodbyes

Our fathers’ seed, our mothers’ knead
After school tricycle speed, wobbly indeed
Bride and groom
Forever I presume
Slow dance lead, slow mouth plead